Turin International Exhibition Poster

May 17, 2012 § Leave a comment

International Exhibition Turin by Metlicovitz

Original Metlicovitz for the Turin Fair, printed in Italy in 1911

In the 19th Century Worlds Fairs and International Expositions were much anticipated glorious and elaborate  events hosted by wealthy and prominent cities.

These fairs featured pavilions from many countries, which were constructed over a period of one year, by prominent architects and designers representing their countries.  Participants strived to feature modern innovations in technology, commerce and the arts and spared no expense in the construction and display of their goods and technologies.

The Turin Exposition of 1911 was a proud moment in Italian history, held just 50 years after the reunification of Italy It served as a proud spotlight on Turin as a modern city.  The fair opened on April 29th and lasted for 6 months .  It was held in the Parco del Valentino.  The Exposition’s focus was on Industry and Labor, to distinguish itself from another Exposition held in Rome the same year with a focus on the arts.

The artist chosen to create the impressive poster for the event was Leopoldo Metlicovitz, (1868-1944) an Italian of Serbian descent, born in Trieste.  Metlicovitz was not formally trained as an artist but exhibited a rare talent in capturing light and shadow, and he rose to prominence quickly after his arrival in Milan during the pinnacle of Belle Epoque poster design.  He joined the foremost printing house Ricordi, where he studied with Italian poster designer Adolph Hohenstein.  After Hohenstein’s departure, Metlicovitz was named Ricordi’s artistic director. He went on to create famous posters for the prominent department store Mele  among others.

The poster Metlicoviz created for the Turin Fair captures the very best of classical realism.  The figures are proud, perfect in form, and the flag they display represents unified  Italy with the great city of Torino  rich in commerce, industry, architecture spread out behind them.

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